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Media inquiries: Please contact Julie Buchanan, julie.buchanan@dcr.virginia.gov, 804-786-2292.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: June 16, 2008
Contact: Jim Meisner Jr., DCR Public Relations Specialist, (804) 786-8442, jim.meisner@dcr.virginia.gov

Virginia celebrates Great Outdoors Month

(Richmond) – Virginia is joining a growing number of states incelebrating June as Great Outdoors Month. For the fifth yearin a row, President Bush has proclaimed June to be outdoorsmonth. Most states have joined in with proclamations and celebrationsfor the event, which is sponsored by the American RecreationCoalition.

"Great Outdoors Month is the perfect time for families to reconnectwith nature and the outdoors,” said Virginia Gov. Timothy M. Kaine. “Iencourage all Virginians to take this opportunity to enjoy Virginia'sbountiful natural and recreational resources and honor the men and womenwho care for them."

With schools letting out, families across the state are looking for activitiesthey can do together. Virginia’s many local parks, stateparks, trails, greenways and other public lands offer countlessopportunities for outings.

“We tend to overlook those outdoor adventures that await us rightaround the corner,” said Joseph H. Maroon, director of the VirginiaDepartment of Conservation and Recreation. “With today’s gasprices, being able to find these close-to-home adventures is more importantthan ever.”

Virginia State Parks are in the spirit of Great Outdoors Month by offeringhundreds of special events in the system’s 34 locations across Virginia.These events are in addition to the parks’ already popular outdoorofferings – camping, swimming, hiking, fishing, boating, cabin rentalsand more.

“This year we’ve focused on programming for the whole family,” addsDCR State Parks Director Joe Elton. “It’s healthy and funfor parents to get children outdoors and to join them in activities thatprovide memories that can last a lifetime.”

Visit www.virginiastateparks.gov for more information on park offeringsand activities.

The American Recreation Coalition is a Washington-based non-profit organizationformed in 1979. Since its inception, ARC has sought to catalyzepublic-private partnerships to enhance and protect outdoor recreationalopportunities and the resources upon which such experiences are based.For more information on ARC and Great Outdoors Month, visit www.funoutdoors.com.

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